NYMC Faculty Publications

Does the Visceral Fat Area Impact the Histopathology Specimen Metrics After Total Mesorectal Excision for Distal Rectal Cancer?

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Resident/Fellow, Faculty

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Langenbeck's Archives of Surgery

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BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the visceral fat area (VFA) has an impact on the histopathology specimen metrics of male patients undergoing robotic total mesorectal resection (rTME) for distal rectal cancer. METHODS: Prospectively collected data of patients undergoing rTME for resectable rectal cancer by five surgeons during a period of three years were extracted from the REgistry of Robotic SURgery for RECTal cancer (RESURRECT). VFA was measured in all patients at preoperative computed tomography. Distal rectal cancer was defined as <6cm from the anal verge. The histopathology metrics included circumferential resection margin (CRM) (in mm) and its involvement rate (if <1mm), distal resection margin (DRM), and quality of TME (complete, nearly-complete, incomplete). RESULTS: Of 839 patients who underwent rTME, 500 with distal rectal cancer were included. One hundred and six (21.2%) males with VFA>100cm were compared to 394 (78.8%) males or females with VFA≤100cm. The mean CRM of males with VFA>100cm was not significantly different from its counterpart (6.6 ± 4.8 mm versus 7.1 ± 9.5mm; p=0.752). CRM involvement rates were 7.6% in both groups (p=1.000). The DRM was not significantly different: 1.8±1.9cm versus 1.8±2.6cm; p=0.996. The quality of TME did not significantly differ: complete TME 87.3% vs. 83.7%; nearly complete TME 8.9% vs. 12.8%; incomplete TME 3.8% vs. 3.6%. Complications and clinical outcomes did not significantly differ. CONCLUSION: This study did not find evidence to support that increased VFA would result in suboptimal histopathology specimen metrics when performing rTME in males with distal rectal cancer.